This will be the last Monday Mail for 2013 — it's about to take its annual holiday break. If you want to get on the waiting list for January, follow the instructions here.
Today we're helping Paula. She wants to find a signature fragrance — she likes the concept, but she also has Asperger's syndrome, and that has complicated her search. Price is not important so long as it doesn't get Clive-Christian-spendy. Here is what we know about Paula and her scent preferences:
She's in her late 50s, and her clothing style is usually soft knits with dramatic jewelry.
She describes herself as intense and introverted.
She is fascinated by perfumes, and loves to sample new scents, but is prone to sensory overload (she prefers bland foods and dim lights, for example), and most perfumes end up being "too" something (rich/sweet/sharp, whatever) and get on her nerves over the long term.
Paula works as a 911 operator (and she blogs about it — she also likes to write). Her job requires that fragrance stay confined to one's own personal space (no sillage to speak of, in other words). She'd like something that is both calming and comforting in this environment.
Ironically, the scents that have made her swoon in the past have usually been powerhouses: Estee Lauder Azuree & Spellbound, Gres Cabochard, Guerlain Jardins de Bagatelle. Frederic Malle Portrait of a Lady is her newest favorite, but she doubts it will work on the job even applied lightly.
Paula likes a variety of notes, including rose, citrus, vanilla, almond/heliotrope, clean musk, oakmoss, "cool" incense and leather.
She doesn't usually like white florals or very spicy scents, with some exceptions. Prominent aquatic notes tend to make her queasy.
What say you?